Caramoan? Never heard of that?
Caramoan is a region in Camarines Sur, quite isolated from the rest of the country. It is a bit time intensive to get there.
Luckily mass tourism has not reached that area yet.
Caramoan became famous, as the TV Show “Survivor” is produced there.
We have seen a lot of great pictures from Caramoan. There are a lot of islands. A perfect area for island hopping.
We need to go there.
So backpacks up and let´s go.
How to get to Caramoan from Naga City
There are two possibilities to get to Caramoan from Naga City.
- Bus: The bus drive takes apparently 4 hours and leads over an adventurous road, which is quite dangerous.
- Mini-Van and Banca: We decide to do it that way.
Early in the morning we start and go by Tricycle to the Mini-Van Terminal in Naga City. That is located next to the SM Shopping Mall Naga.
Signs with destinations show you which Van to take. In order to get to Caramoan, you need to take the van to Sabang.
Great! We are the first passengers. Free choice of seats.
And that´s where the trouble begins.
The Vans do not depart unless they are full. As we are the only passengers, who want to travel to Sabang, the driver tries to persuade us to rent the van exclusively.
The usual fare is 100Php per person. He offers to bring us to Sabang for 1500Php. 😀
Not doing that. We wait.
You should have a lot of time and patience when you travel in the Philippines.
After a while the driver realises, that we won´t give up.
But as no other passengers are coming, we change to the van to Lagonoy and agree with the driver to drop us in Port Sabang. That costs us 150Php per person.
The last boat from Sabang to Caramoan departs at 2pm. You should calculate 2-3 hours for the van ride from Naga to Sabang.
From Sabang to Caramoan by Banca
After two hours we reach Sabang Port.
As there is some time left until the departure, we go looking for some coffee.
Back on the main road, we find it quite fast.
Nice view and a pool table. Everything there.
Finally it´s boarding time. For this mobile pier we have to pay 10Php each.
The boat is quite small. Don´t do the same mistake like we did and sit in the back next to the engine. Your ears won´t be happy about the noise.
We are surrounded by a breath-taking nature.
It takes 2-3 hours to reach Caramoan from Sabang Port. It depends on the size of the boat and how rough the sea is.
The ticket costs 120 Php per person. You should bring your own food and drinks as there is nothing to be purchased on board.
You can smoke on board but you need to climb out of the seating area. Just watch, not to fall into the water.
For the next 2.5 hours we sail passing a wonderful nature.
Some of these villages are only accessible by boat.
Finally, we arrive in Caramoan. The place is called Guijalo Port.
And just in time it starts to rain.
We are really happy about the rain. In Abu Dhabi you don´t see that very often. Maybe twice a year.
We are told, that the port was heavily damaged during the last Typhoon.
At the port office you need to register and pay a fee of 30PHp. As Caramoan is very remote, who knows what that registration might be good for.
From Guijalo to Paniman Beach
We booked our accommodation already from Naga City. Crazy Coconut Cottages is located at Paniman Beach. As we don´t know, how much the cost of transport are, we call Sam, the German guesthouse owner.
300 Php is the regular fare for a Tricycle from Guijalo Port to Paniman.
It is always good to know the prices to avoid being fooled.
The drive to Paniman takes around 30 minutes.
It is raining more and more. It was well worth to buy an underwater camera. 😀
Our total travel time from Naga City to Paniman Beach in Caramoan was around 5 hours. Finally we reach our accommodation.
You will find more picture from our guesthouse here.
Jen and Sam are great hosts and assist you with advise. We feel well here straight away. There are 3 cosy rooms, a small bar and restaurant area. Per night we pay 1200 Php. If you wish, Jen is preparing excellent Filipino cuisine for you.
We discover Paniman by foot.
You can see on the pictures that Paniman is a very rural, cosy village. There are a few Sari Sari stores and eateries with local dishes.
There is no ATM in Paniman. You can find one in the main village half way up on the road to Guijalo. But we have heard, it is often out of service. So make sure, you bring enough cash for your stay in Caramoan.
Hopefully the weather is getting better tomorrow as we are planning to go on an island hopping trip.
You can watch rooster fights in the evenings.
Walking makes hungry. Time to get some food.
We walk and walk. This time we try out the other side of the beach.
Back at Crazy Coconut Cottages Jen has prepared an excellent dinner for us.
For the next day we are planning to go on a boat trip. If possible try to get other guests to join you, as you can then share the price for the boat.
You can see a lot if you choose to get to Caramoan by Van and boat. It takes between 4 and 6 hours. If you prefer only 1 kind of transport, take the bus.
How did you like this post? Have you ever been to Caramoan? Leave us a comment.